“What unites people? Armies? Gold? Flags? Stories. There’s nothing more powerful than a good story”, in the immortal words of Tyrion Lanister, a fictional character from Game of Thrones—arguably the most debated series in the history of TV.
Much has been written, said and heard about why the idea of Brexit surged and how the first secession venture in the history of the European Union (EU) finally happened. Exasperation, frustration, boredom, fatigue and joy, all of them were felt in this socio-political affair where social media and tabloid journalism thrived like never before.
Whether Brexit is the result of a well-told tale that a majority of people wanted to believe, only time will tell. How much we would give to know what history will one day write about Brexit, what will follow the phrase, “once upon a time there was a kingdom that…”! Let’s be wise observers.
To Dan Brown, a renowned American writer, “History is always written by the winners”. But categorising Brexit as a story with winners and losers is over simplistic, at least for the time being. If there is something it has revealed so far it is that a unified Europe isn’t quite yet a dream fully understood and shared in each and every home in the old continent.
For now, people, businesses and governments have to navigate Brexit’s aftermath. This infographic-based article summarises key information on immigration, tax and social security for UK nationals living in Benelux. We also give four key recommendations for businesses operating in Luxembourg, The Netherlands and Belgium whose workforce includes UK nationals.
Immigration, Tax and Social Security: What UK nationals living in Benelux need to know
After a negotiating period between the EU and the UK that took longer than expected—from 29 March 2017 until 29 Jan 2020 when the EU parliament ratified the Withdrawal Agreement— the country of Shakespeare has finally left the EU.
The agreement includes a transition period until 31 December 2020, during which time current rules on free movement of citizens will continue to apply in the UK and the EU.
However, new rules will be imposed after the transition period comes to an end. Some of them are already established—that’s the case of tax or immigration issues for instance—and some are still under discussion (social security).
We encourage businesses to act now. Readiness has always been a strategic ally.
What we think
“Albion” was the first name the ancient Greeks gave to the United Kingdom, dozens of centuries ago. I like to think of Brexit as another key historical event marking the long history of this piece of land that has greatly influenced the past and present of Europe. The friendly ties between Luxembourg and the UK remain, even if the regulatory and political framework change. I encourage businesses to prepare in the best possible way to support the UK nationals in their path to comply with the working-related requirements after Brexit’s transition period is over.